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Curating Contemporary Design MA (in partnership with the Design Museum): Sino-British Fellowship Trust

Sino-British Scholarship student profiles

Since 2006 the Sino-British Fellowship Trust has generously supported seven students studying on the Curating Contemporary Design MA course.

Keyan Lai

Name: Keyan Lai
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2006/07
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I am currently undertaking my PhD research at Cardiff University, looking at the internationalisation process of Chinese companies."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"There's no doubt that I benefited greatly from the course. Along with the curating knowledge and practices I acquired, the best thing for me was that by attending the dynamic course and communicating with people from different countries, my horizon was opened up and my outlook became much more international. After completing the course, I returned to Shanghai where I had the chance to work for several famous international companies, including HSBC. This inspired me and led me to my current position as PhD research student in Cardiff. I felt very grateful for the Curating Contemporary Design MA, which opened up a completely new world for me."

 

Jiangtao Li

Name: Jiangtao Li
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2007/08
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I am now the head of the exhibition department and the director's assistant at the Sichuan Museum. During the past three year I have curated several exhibitions with teams of four other young curators. And now I am deciding whether to move to Beijing as an official for SACH (the State Admonition of Cultural Heritages) or to stay here to continue my curating journey."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"The Curating Contemporary Design MA has helped me so much in my curating practice, which I've used for many of my exhibitions. Meanwhile, inspired by one of our course projects, we started the first mobile museum."

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"The course provided me with the skills to work with an international curating team. This helps me with my current curating projects with UK curators, and it also provides me with great connections with UK museums, art institutions and curators. A result of this was the exhibition Made in Britain, which was held in conjunction with the British Council in Chengdu, Hong Kong in 2010."

 

Ning Li

Name: Ning Li
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2008/09
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I'm now a curator of Academy & Research Department of China Art Museum, Shanghai (Shanghai Art Museum), and have just finished co-curating a project Millet, Courbet and French Naturalism: Master Pieces from Musée d'Orsay, one of the opening exhibitions at CAM."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"The Curating Contemporary Design MA opens many windows. It connects and creates a unique network for each member of its curating family. My occupation depends on strong networks, and I personally get huge benefits from it. I'm now getting more opportunities and gaining the confidence to handle international projects by myself. My aim is to enjoy life, and keep on curating!"

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"The idea of a 'Curating Family' created by Professor Catherine McDermott and Professor Donna Loveday is a given. In Shanghai, Beijing or other cities in the world, we're linked by many cultural events, beyond art and design. The idea of 'WE' goes further than my classmates or KU alumni already."

 

Feng Sun

Name: Feng Sun
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2009/10
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I am a Curator and Project Director of the China International Exhibition Agency. In the past two years I curated and executed the exhibitions and projects such as Transformation: A View on Chinese Contemporary Art, at Istanbul Modern, Turkey; Fashion From East Asia during China Fashion Week, at Beijing Hotel; China International Museum Art Products Expo, at the China National Convention Center. For the future projects, I will continue to focus on contemporary art and design."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"The Curating Contemporary Design MA offered me a platform to study with the leading institutions, scholars and professionals in the area of contemporary creative culture and it has expanded my outlook on art and design. It has also helped me to gain the ability to handle large-scale projects and to lead a team. The professional resources the course has brought me have been applied in my work, which also encouraged me to build more connections between China and UK."

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"Through the course, the curators from UK and China and the rest of the world were gathered together to study, communicate, cooperate and connect with each other. This creates new networks for the curators and fosters new collaborations. As a curator in China, I am looking forward to work with my UK colleagues in the future."

 

Danfeng Yang

Name: Danfeng Yang
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2010/11
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I call myself a 'Fan of Crafts' although people call me other things such as: artist, designer and curator."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"The things I learnt during  the Curating Contemporary Design MA (and whilst living in the UK and embracing the culture there) make me more able to communicate through my design, across different cultures. My design can become a bridge between the east and west. I believe that creativity is a tool for communication and that objects have their own universal language — a language that is a means of communication as good as the written word or speech. To feel, to see and to experience is a universal language that allows an audience to truly question, think and engage."

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"This course enabled me to develop academically; I had no previous formal teaching in design but had learnt through experiment and experience. It answered many questions and continues to lead me to ask more questions relating to the western perception of 'design' and the extents and constraints of this. In October 2011 I curated my first exhibition January 4th at the Hong Kong Arts Center. I was the curator but also one of the designers, along with Andre Dubreuil (French) and Patrice Butler (British). Similar to traditional tales in which fate brings people together, the exhibition's catalyst is our shared birthday, Jan 4th. I used this as the starting point to explore cross-cultural design and our aesthetic convergences and differences, all of which are representative of different generations and nationalities. The exhibition draws together three diverse designers, from different countries and generations through a shared fascination with traditional Chinese craftsmanship, material and imagery."

 

Cynthia Chi Zhang

Name: Cynthia Chi Zhang
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2011/12
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I am now preparing the first international photography festival for the government of Hainan province to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the province's establishment. I am also the executive chief editor of Coastal Life magazine, which is the most important travel and lifestyle magazine in this province and supported by the government."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"I am very grateful for this scholarship, which has provided me with a valuable opportunity to come to London. This overseas study experience has allowed me to observe the world and design curatorship from a new perspective, and will certainly help broaden my career horizons. The well-organized course has provided an ideal combination of exposure to both design/museology theory and curating practice. Through the course, I have enhanced my knowledge in museology, design history and contemporary design; various museums and galleries visits have inspired me in a more practical way and led me to discover and experience first-hand exciting developments in contemporary design; and the group projects have given me an amazing opportunity to work in an international team, interacting with people from diverse culture backgrounds."

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"Now we have many Chinese graduates from this course. Most of them return to China and direct their knowledge to the country's curatorial practices. The course also holds projects between China and the UK, which definitely enhance the curating links between two countries."

 

Huikai Wang

Name: Huikai Wang
Course: Curating Contemporary Design MA
Scholarship: 2012/13
Nationality: Chinese

What are you doing now?

"I am currently studying on the MA Curating Contemporary Design course at Kingston University, in partnership with the Design Museum."

How did the course help you get where you are today?

"Although I am still in the course, I do believe that this year will enrich my experience and my knowledge of museum exhibition issues, which will benefit me greatly in my future career."

How has the course helped forged stronger curating links between the UK and China?

"Most of the Chinese students in this course decide to go back to China after finishing their studies in London. They bring all the knowledge, their experiences and friendship they've gained in the UK back with them to China, too. This kind of relationship built up in the UK with British teachers, students and curators will definitely influence their future careers in a positive way in the long run."

 

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This course is taught at Knights Park and the Design Museum, London

View Knights Park and the Design Museum, London on our Google Maps

Contact us

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Location

This course is taught at Knights Park and the Design Museum, London

View Knights Park and the Design Museum, London on our Google Maps
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